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What You Need To Know About Using Video For Design

Phillip PeetUX/UI/Web Designer

Since its inception video has developed into an unmatched communication tool. In today’s online landscape, any website that integrates video into its design puts itself at an advantage over its competitors. Few forms of media offer the insight and scope for creativity that video can. It appeals to the visual senses and habits of online audiences and is becoming an increasingly common and essential asset for this very reason.

How to integrate video into your web design

Websites can no longer afford to be static. The average user has moved on from images and text on a plain background, hungry for new ways to consume content. By far, video is their preferred method of getting this content.

Before you start to develop your own video content, you need to think about how it will integrate and benefit your web design. Using video within web design isn’t just about re-creating something you saw on YouTube and adding it onto your homepage, it’s about representing your brand and giving an impression of your aims and creativity. Video doesn’t even just mean conventional video content, it can be more creative and subtle, such as animation.

With this in mind, let’s take a look at some of the most common methods.

Background videos

One of the most popular forms of integrating video into web design. Full-screen background videos are striking, and succeed because they force the user to intake the content. They typically sit in the background of the website or within a large top banner, lasting up to a minute and rarely making use of audio.

Web designers like background videos because they give a website a modern feel and force the viewer to confront the content, allowing you to showcase important information or a campaign as soon as the page loads within any action from the user.

Movement catches the eye first as a page loads, so video can act as a starting point for your homepage design. Video walls can also be used to showcase other forms of content, such as social feeds for specific campaigns like the kind Walls produce. These are beneficial as rather than putting company info in a visitor’s face, you’re showing them your most vital campaign at that moment.

Video loops

Video loops are a more subtle method. While background videos can be looped, they’re not necessarily the same. As automated content they serve much of the same purpose, but are generally used as showreels, helping to encompass the business’ successes and culture to the visitor without asking them to engage for long periods.

Sometimes a viewer can find themselves watching this loop multiple times, waiting for a specific moment they missed the first time. The opportunity to do this can increase watch time where they would initially have moved on. The aim of this content is to be short, engaging and informative. They are simple to make and have been shown to play a huge part in user retention. At the simplest level, Kapwing allows you to loop short clips to use on your website or social media, giving you fun, engaging short-form video content to attract new visitors with.

Video players

Traditional video content is what we’re most familiar with as frequent browsers. This video content is accessed from clicking play on a video player placed strategically on a website, generally to complement other content or pages. More a style of content than a design element, getting creative with their placement can prolong engagement with the page. Marketers enjoy using this type of video to produce interviews, product highlights and behind-the-scenes content.

Selecting the right video player is key to making video content within your web design a success. How your website is built will play a huge part in this, as some more rigid CMS are resistant to video. Most leading website builders will feature video compatibility automatically integrated or accept the use of video apps. However, adding content to these pages may not always be as straightforward and require the use of an external video player. While free, YouTube and Vimeo aren’t always the best option, and a private video host such as Cincopa may be better suited to your CMS.

Emerging methods

As video evolves as a medium, your website needs to be capable of keeping up with emerging trends and the customer demand for new forms of video content. VR, for example, is a growing interest amongst consumers looking for new methods to help them make purchase decisions.

This means future-proofing your websites for developments in the video industry should be a major consideration for any business owner or web designer. Leading CMS platforms like WordPress have already invested heavily integrating VR and AR in their design, helping to increase customer buying confidence with immersive technologies.

How video can retain audiences and grow engagement

Video is a proven method of keeping users on your website and improving engagement rates. The average user will spend 88% more time on a website with video content than on one that lacks it.

No matter what kind of video content you have on your website, it will increase engagement and time spent on it to some level, even if it is just the second spend watching the content. You can leverage this engagement and push it throughout the website, using your video to direct visitors to other pages.

Video content performs best on homepages, product pages and when complementing social proof. If the video auto-plays or is in an inherently obvious place on the page, it will encourage the user to watch before proceeding with the rest of the page, which can provide context to the rest of the page and website, improving the total time they spend on the page.

How video in your design is brand building

Video is one of the best tools available for brand building. A well-placed video on your homepage or a creatively edited and insightful content scattered around your website can do a lot for building a positive perception of your brand. Think about how you could use an about us or employee highlight video on your homepage to give a full overview of your brand, or how auto-playing product videos may be more enticing on a product page than a static image and text.

These signs of creativity can help users make decisions and also lead them down a content rabbit hole, looking for more information about your business and what you offer. This may seem like it’s distracting from the user journey, but it’s actually part of building your brand identity and developing customer loyalty.

The use of video within website design suggests to visitors that you are a forward-thinking, innovative brand and puts your content or brand story right in front of your face. Here we have covered some tools and methods of making the most of video, but there are more ways you can learn by experimenting with what suits your brand.